The How Of Who

The how of the who is in question
of we who brought fibers twisted to threads!
Let us make cloth from this discussion.

The legacy of your physical DNA found a match
in the tapestry of our spiritual DNA…
…and its hue made man.

Like you, the i of I fell to Earth moist as
a moonbeam into a pomegranate womb—
first as attraction then as gravitas.

Our tiny hands waved at particles—parcels
of kind attention, or, frenetic energy rising
to teach the lessons of riding a bicycle.

As for me, I explored strands of ore
in turquoise stones; my ears heard the
Charlotte’s Web through a teacher’s voice.

You may have studied the Civil War,
painted landscapes on notebook paper,
collected coins in jars.

Steel, gasoline, electricity fueled these lives
to houses, classes, beaches, post offices;
we let ink capture maps, motions, flags and words on paper.

But enough about you, my friend! Can you tell me why I
Believe that airplanes and remote controls work by

Do you see the ether in my eyes that reflects
the halogen in your own? May we parse
the fourth mystery of water?

My navigations, to date, include: relief, subtlety,
completion, passion, diplomacy, witness,
freedom, love love love and love. Additional love.

An array of truths brought us here
to speak and listen and know.
Do you also question this discreet system?

Hearts in brains and brains in hearts—
your six senses, and mine, make this memory
of love, play, exercise.

NOTE: This poem was written as a result of the first prompt given to the group of strangers I met at a recent conference for writers. THe prompt was “Write 250 words about how we come to be the people we are.” I am grateful to poet Thomas Lynch, the poet and teacher who led this group. Other group members produced excellent, diverse essays and poetry that created a valued memory.


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